Join in: Community engagement and museums

University of Western Sydney Dr Nuala Morse

I see a community group engaging in an interesting and informative museum program. Image: Ink blot test via Wikipedia

Take part in this University of Western Sydney study into community engagement work and participatory practice in museums.

A University of Western Sydney study is currently looking for professionals working in the museums sector to participate in a study into how and why museum professionals are undertaking community engagement and participation work in Australian museums. The study will look at the practice, skill sets, attitudes and knowledge of community engagement work and participatory practice in museums. The research explores the roles of museum professionals in participatory and community engagement projects, and the approaches they use to support this work. The research also explores the ‘emotional’ nature of community engagement work, including the emotion work and emotional labour of museum professionals.

The project builds upon research conducted by Dr Nuala Morse in the museum sector in the United Kingdom, in particular with Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums. This follow-on research is conducted as part of a 4 month Research Fellowship and aims to develop an understanding of the Australian context.

The university is seeking participation from a range of museums professionals, including those who are responsible for community engagement work and those involved in participatory practices. The study is primarily interested in projects that engage and work with community groups, rather than visitors. The interview will focus on how you and your institution have developed participatory and community engagement practices.

Interviews will be conducted in your place of work or somewhere convenient for you; or alternatively over the phone or Skype for those outside of NSW. Interviews will last approximately an hour and will take place between early March and mid June 2015. You are also able to choose whether you would prefer for your interview to be anonymous.


If you have any questions, or if you are interested in taking part, please email Dr Nuala Morse:  


This study is organised by Dr Nuala Morse, Research Fellow at the Institute for Culture and Society, University of Western Sydney. The research is funded by the Australian Department of Education through an Endeavour Research Fellowship.

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